New research suggests the shape of the Big Bang might be more complicated than previously thought. Physicists and astronomers have long believed that the universe has mirror symmetry, like a basketball.
Physics professor Michael Longo and a team of five undergraduates at the University of Michigan cataloged the rotation direction of tens of thousands of spiral galaxies photographed in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. They uncovered an excess of left-handed, or counter-clockwise rotating, spirals in the part of the sky toward the north pole of the Milky Way. The effect extended beyond 600 million light years away.
The findings seem to challenge the mirror-symmetry model of our universe—and may even suggest the universe is still spinning.
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(Photo credit: NASA, ESA)